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The Boston Globe

Magazine

Letters to the editor

Globe Magazine readers respond to stories about teen bedrooms and what the Museum of Fine Arts owes Boston.

BEDTIME LIMITS

As a design consultant, I was saddened to see photographs of double beds in two middle schoolers’ rooms ("Teen Dreams,", February 19). Although both rooms were beautifully decorated, teenagers need space to explore their hobbies and interests. They won’t have a double bed in their college dorm, so why now? Sleepovers? A trundle bed or twin beds save space and make for enjoyable time with friends. Teens are not miniature adults; they don’t need adult bedrooms.

Linda Varone / Arlington

PAYING UP

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Eric Weinberger’s essay took up an interesting issue of how nonprofits, in this case the Museum of Fine Arts, can contribute to the host city (Perspective, February 19). But the issue was superficially handled, concentrating on how an institution pays its CEO a fat salary and should pitch some of that money to the city. I would have preferred a discussion of how a balance sheet of MFA activities helping Boston might look. The basic premise is that nonprofit institutions owe something to the host city. Do they spend resources on free public access or student training with local schools? Is there a destination factor that brings visitors into the city to spend money at hotels and restaurants? We might find that the MFA gives back in a number of ways, but perhaps some other nonprofits not as much. It is good to generally bring up the point that legal tax status does not remove the spirit that nonprofits should help enrich the community, even with a few dollars.

James Rusche / Framingham

Oops, did someone forget that the state and federal government, through our representatives, decided that nonprofits should not pay taxes on their core businesses? Oops, is Weinberger just a wee bit envious of Malcolm Rogers’s salary? Oops, did the Globe forget that journalists are supposed to be critical thinkers? Weinberger owes Rogers a big and public apology. As for the payments in lieu of taxes program and Mayor Tom Menino’s attempt to shame nonprofits into coughing up protection money, let’s get real. Extortion is extortion.

Jonathan W. Baker / Sudbury

Weinberger is on the mark. The MFA should pay its share to keep the city clean, safe, and attractive. This, in turn, enhances the MFA. Rogers’s salary of $600,000 plus $167,000 in benefits is obscene. Most of us would be happy just to receive his benefit dollars. There is a misconception that organizations classified as nonprofit do not make a profit. Many times they do, and monies above expenses are distributed as bloated salaries to upper administration.

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Donna Chadwick / Burlington

Weinberger somehow leverages legitimate issues (such as whether nonprofits should pay property taxes and the issue of leadership compensation) into a crusade against the injustice he perceives as Rogers’s salary and benefits. He gives no background or insight into his views, but rather provides sophomoric analyses. I have no opinion on the MFA’s legal rights as a nonprofit to not pay taxes, nor do I have an informed opinion on Rogers’s performance. I look to the Globe to help inform that opinion. However, I do have an opinion regarding attack journalism and the divisive language of class envy perpetrated by Weinberger. Please do not allow attacks on successful contributors to our society that are based solely on “they make too much money” to be part of your reporting and editorials.

Don Carlin / Southborough

COMMENTS Write to magazine@globe.com or The Boston Globe Magazine/Letters, PO Box 55819, Boston, MA 02205-5819. Letters are subject to editing.

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